Publication Abstracts

Larsen et al. 1993

Larsen, J.C., E.W. Chiou, W.P. Chu, M.P. McCormick, L.R. McMaster, S. Oltmans, and D. Rind, 1993: A comparison of the Stratospheric Aerosol and Gas Experiment II tropospheric water vapor to radiosonde measurements. J. Geophys. Res., 98, 4897-4917, doi:10.1029/92JD01630.

Upper tropospheric Stratospheric Aerosol and Gas Experiment II (SAGE II) water vapor observations are compared to correlative radiosonde observations and radiosonde based climatologies. The SAGE II 1987 monthly zonal mean water vapor climatology is compared to both the Global Atmospheric Circulation Statistics (1963-1973) climatology and to the 1987 radiosonde climataology. The clear sky SAGE II climatology is found to be approximately half the level of both the the clear/cloudy sky radiosonde climatologies. To determine whether this is realistic for these two different climatologies or includes additional observational and instrumental biases, we took the 1987 radiosonde data set and identified approximately 800 correlative profile pairs. The observational biases inherent to SAGE II and the radiosondes produce a set of profile pairs characteristic of clear sky, land conditions. A critical review of the radiosonde measurement capability was carried out to establish the operating range and accuracy in the upper troposphere. We show that even with tight concidence criterion, the quality of the profile pair comparisons varies considerably because of strong water vapor variability occurring on small time and space scales. Annual zonal means calculated from the set of profile pairs again finds SAGE II significantly drier in many latitude bands. Resolving the radiosonde data base by hygrometer type shows this to be true for all hygrometers except for the thin film capcaitive type (Vaisala Humicap). For this hygrometer, between 4.5 and 6.5 km SAGE II is drier by approximately 25%, and from 8.5 to 11.5 km they are nearly equivalent when global annual means are compared. The good agreement with the Vaisala Humicap, currently the most accurate and responsive hygrometer in operational use, suggests existing radiosonde climatologies contain a significant moist bias in the upper troposphere.

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BibTeX Citation

@article{la04100j,
  author={Larsen, J. C. and Chiou, E. W. and Chu, W. P. and McCormick, M. P. and McMaster, L. R. and Oltmans, S. and Rind, D.},
  title={A comparison of the Stratospheric Aerosol and Gas Experiment II tropospheric water vapor to radiosonde measurements},
  year={1993},
  journal={J. Geophys. Res.},
  volume={98},
  pages={4897--4917},
  doi={10.1029/92JD01630},
}

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RIS Citation

TY  - JOUR
ID  - la04100j
AU  - Larsen, J. C.
AU  - Chiou, E. W.
AU  - Chu, W. P.
AU  - McCormick, M. P.
AU  - McMaster, L. R.
AU  - Oltmans, S.
AU  - Rind, D.
PY  - 1993
TI  - A comparison of the Stratospheric Aerosol and Gas Experiment II tropospheric water vapor to radiosonde measurements
JA  - J. Geophys. Res.
VL  - 98
SP  - 4897
EP  - 4917
DO  - 10.1029/92JD01630
ER  -

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